It is now just one day until ‘Mad’ Mike Hughes plans to strap himself to a homebuilt, steam-powered rocket, and fire himself 1,800 feet into the air in a bid to prove that the Earth is flat.
Limo-driver Hughes proposes to perform this feat on Saturday between 2pm – 3pm local time in California (10pm to 11pm UK time) with a rocket he has spent the last few years building out of salvage parts in his garage.
The 61-year-old will attempt to fly over the ghost town of Amboy, California, for a mile at a speed of around 500mph, before the £20,000 contraption deploys two parachutes.
Hughes says he will heat 70 gallons of water in a stainless steel tank to fuel the rocket on the day.
Sponsored by a group called Research Flat Earth, he is optimistic that Saturday’s mission will get him high enough to gather photographic evidence of the planet’s shape. (It won’t.) And he plans to go even higher at a later date if the launch is successful.
“I don’t believe in science,” Hughes told the Associated Press.
“I know about aerodynamics and fluid dynamics and how things move through the air, about the certain size of rocket nozzles and thrust. But that’s not science, that’s just formula. There’s no difference between science and science fiction.”
As a brief interlude, the Earth is not flat. That is a scientifically proven fact. Even before it was scientifically proven it was postured back in around 384 BC by everyone’s favourite Greek philosopher, Aristotle. For the record, the Earth is a bumpy spheroid.
Nonetheless, Hughes has promised to live-stream the launch for $5 per view.
Writing on Facebook about a future venture, he said: “There is a viable plan to put me up to the edge of space 62 miles up. The estimated cost is $1.8m and we already have the fuel tank and propulsion system. This is the one true way to prove a flat earth. It would take just over 2.5 hours start to finish.”
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Flat Earth Theory
The leading flat Earth theory holds that that our planet is actually a disc and that gravity is an illusion.
Earth is a disc with the Arctic Circle in the center and Antarctica, a 150-foot-tall wall of ice, around the rim. NASA employees, they say, guard this ice wall to prevent people from climbing over and falling off the disc.
Earth’s day and night cycle is explained by positing that the sun and moon are spheres measuring 32 miles that move in circles 3,000 miles above the plane of the Earth. (Stars, they say, move in a plane 3,100 miles up.) Like spotlights, these celestial spheres illuminate different portions of the planet in a 24-hour cycle. Flat-earthers believe there must also be an invisible “antimoon” that obscures the moon during lunar eclipses.